|Born||1 July 1938|
Allahabad, United Provinces, British India
(Present-day Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh, India)
|Genres||Hindustani classical music, film score|
|Occupation(s)||music director, flautist, composer|
Chaurasia was born in Allahabad (1938) (officially called Prayagraj) in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. His mother died when he was six years old. He had to learn music without his father's knowledge, as his father wanted him to become a wrestler. Chaurasia did go to the Akhada and trained with his father for some time, although he also started learning music and practising at his friend's house.
He has stated,
I was not any good at wrestling. I went there only to please my father. But maybe because of the strength and stamina I built up then, I'm able to play the bansuri even to this day.— Hariprasad Chaurasiaa
Chaurasia started learning vocal music from his neighbour, Rajaram, at the age of 15. Later, he switched to playing the flute under the tutelage of Bholanath Prasanna of Varanasi for eight years. He joined the All India Radio, Cuttack, Odisha in 1957 and worked as a composer and performer. Much later, while working for All India Radio, he received guidance from the reclusive Annapurna Devi, daughter of Baba Allaudin Khan. She only agreed to teach him if he was willing to unlearn all that he had learnt until then. Another version is that she only agreed to teach him after he took the decision to switch from right-handed to left-handed playing to show her his commitment. In any case Chaurasia plays left-handed to this day.
Apart from classical music, Hariprasad has collaborated with Shivkumar Sharma, forming a group called Shiv-Hari. The pair composed music for many popular movies, including Silsila and Chandni, and created some highly popular songs. Chaurasia also collaborated with Bhubaneswar Mishra, forming the pair "Bhuban-Hari" (in line with Shiv-Hari), and the pair composed music for many Odia movies, creating numerous songs that were hugely popular in the state. These include Muje janena kaha baata (sung by Suman Kalyanpur; movie: Gapa helebi Sata); and all songs from Maa o Mamata, and many more.
Chaurasia's nephew and pupil Rakesh Chaurasia is a highly accomplished flautist now, and has been performing globally with such eminent maestros as Ustad Zakir Hussain.
He serves as the artistic director of the World Music Department at the Rotterdam Music Conservatory in the Netherlands. He was also the founder of the Vrindavan Gurukul in Mumbai (opened 2006) and Vrindavan Gurukul in Bhubaneshwar (opened 2010). Both of these institutes are schools dedicated to training students in bansuri in the Guru-shishya tradition.
He has collaborated with several western musicians, including John McLaughlin, Jan Garbarek, and Ken Lauber, and has composed music for Indian films. Chaurasia also played on The Beatles' 1968 B-side "The Inner Light", which was written by George Harrison. He also played with George Harrison on his first solo release, Wonderwall Music, and with Harrison, Ravi Shankar and others on the Dark Horse Records release Shankar Family & Friends.
Chaurasia has married twice, first to Kamala Devi  and then Anuradha Roy. He has three sons. With first wife Kamala Devi he has two sons, Vinay and Ajay. With Anuradha, Chaurasia has a son named Rajeev. Chaurasia has five granddaughters and a grandson. His nephew Rakesh Chaurasia is also a flautist and carrying forward the family legacy.
In popular culture
The 2013 documentary film Bansuri Guru features the life and legacy of Chaurasia and was directed by the musician's son Rajeev Chaurasia and produced by the Films Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India.
- Sangeet Natak Academy - 1984
- Konark Samman - 1992
- Padma Bhushan - 1992
- Yash Bharati Samman - 1994
- Padma Vibhushan - 2000
- Pandit Chatur Lal Excellence Award - 2015
- Hafiz Ali Khan Award - 2000
- Dinanath Mangeshkar Award - 2000
- Pune Pandit Award - 2008, by The Art & Music Foundation, Pune, India
- Akshaya Samman - 2009
- Honorary Doctorate, North Orissa University - 2008
- Honorary Doctorate, Utkal University - 2011
- National Eminence award, NADA VIDYA BHARTI by Visakha Music and Dance Academy, Vizag - 2009
- The 25 Greatest Global Living Legends In India by NDTV - 2013
- Gansamradni Lata Mangeshkar Award - 2021-22
- Official Biography 'Breath of Gold' by Sathya Saran- 2019
- 'Hariprasad Chaurasia: Romance of the Bamboo Reed', by Uma Vasudev - 2005
- Official biography "Woodwinds of Change" by Surjit Singh - 2008
- 'Hariprasad Chaurasia and the Art of Improvisation', by Henri Tournier
- 'Bansuri Samrat : Hariprasad Chaurasia', by Surjit Singh
This section needs additional citations for verification. (June 2017)
These are major albums released by Hariprasad Chaurasia
- Krishnadhwani 60
- Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia - Flute
- Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia - Flute (different set of ragas, same album name)
- Morning to Midnight Ragas - Morning Ragas
- Nothing But Wind - Composed by the renowned musician "Isaignani" Ilaiyaraaja
- Call of the Valley
- Live in Ahmedabad '89
- Immortal Series
- Megh Malhar
- Night Ragas
- Live in Amsterdam '92
- Morning to Midnight Ragas - Afternoon Ragas
- All time Favourites
- Live from Sawai Gandharva Music Festival - Video (VHS)
- Raga-s DU Nord Et Du Sud
- Immortal Series - Flute Fantasia
- Indian Classical Masters
- Daylight Ragas
- Flute - Hariprasad Chaurasia
- Soundscapes - Music of the Rivers - Hari Prasad Chaurasia
- Thumri - The Music of Love
- In A Mellow Mood
- Immortal Series - Devine Drupad
- Classic Greats1 - Ideas on Flute
- In Live Concert
- Cascades of Hindustani Music
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 4am to 7am Raga Bhairava: Integration
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 7am to 10am Raga Gurjari Todi: Compassion
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 10am to 1pm Raga Vrindavani Saranga: Greater Energy
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 1pm to 4pm Raga Multani: Affuence
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 4pm to 7pm Raga Marwa: Coherence
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 7pm to 10pm Raga Desh: Joy
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 10pm to 1am Raga Abhogi: Peaceful Slumber
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 1am to 4am Raga Sindhu Bhairavi: Gentleness
- Hariprasad Chaurasia - Flute
- Music 157 - Live in London
- Music - Flute
- Great Jugalbandis
- Music from the world of OSHO - Above & Beyond
- Prem Yog
- Written on the Wind
- Romantic Themes
- Saptarishi - Live at Siri Fort
- The Mystical Flute of Hari Prasad Chaurasia
- Maestro's Choice
- Basant Bahar
- Chaurasia's Choice
- Hari Prasad Chaurasia & his Divine Flute
- Flute Recital
- Valley Recalls - In search of Peace, Love and Harmony
- Krishna's Flute - Master of the Bansuri
- Classical Encounters - A live Experience with Pt. Hari Prasad Chaurasia
- Fabulous Flute
- Pundit Hari Prasad Chaurasia
- In Concert - Vancouver, B.C
- Hariprasad Chaurasia - Flute
- The Bamboo Flautist of His Generation
- Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia - Nada in Jerusalem
- Classical Encounters - A Live Experience with Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia
- Great Jugalbandis
- The Golden Collection (Classical)
- Immortal Essence
- Golden Raga Collection
- Bustan Abraham - Fanar (Guest appearance alongside Zakir Hussain)
- Samarpan-VCD Special 60th Birthday Edition
- The Charms Companion
- Morning to Midnight - Morning to Dusk
- Music for Reiki
- Live Inside Khajuraho
- Live in New Delhi - '89
- Golden Raga Collection
- Musical Titans of India - Jugalbandhi Video (VHS)
- Pure Joy - Positive Energy Music
- Music without Boundaries
- Maaya - Far East
- Hriday - Cuba
- Caravan Spain
- Live Concert at Savai Gandharva Music Festival
- Gurukul - The Guru shishya Parampara
- Love Divine - Parables of Passion
- Power & Grace - Live at the Saptak Festival 2001
- Discovery of Indian Classical Music
- Flute Duet
- Flute Deity Hariprasad Chaurasia
- The Greatest Hits of Hariprasad Chaurasia
- Salvation - Instrumental Bhajans
- Sounds of Silence
Ajanma - Hariprasad Chaurasia (Solo album)
- Year unknown
- La Flute De Pundit Hariprasad Chaurasia
- Hariprasad Chaurasia - The Most Celebrated Flautist of India
- Charm of the Bamboo flute
- Kalpana - Imagination
- A Kaleidoscope of various ragas
- Krishna Utsav
- Kali - Classical Instrumental
- Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia - the Living Legend of Flute
- Moon Light Moods - Flute Recital
- Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia - The Living Legend of Flute
- Indian Music
- Dancing Water
- Fusion India - Passage of India Series
- Being Still
- Dhammapada - Sacred teaching of Buddha
- The Charms Companion
- Nothing but wind (1988) - Composed by Ilaiyaraaja
- With Zakir Hussain
- Making Music (ECM, 1986)
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 4am to 7am Raga Bhairava
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 7am to 10am Raga Jaita
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 10am to 1pm Raga Ahir Lalita
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 1pm to 4pm Raga Samanta Saranga
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 4pm to 7pm Raga Puriya Dhanashri
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 7pm to 10pm Raga Maru Bihaga
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 10pm to 1am Raga Gunji Kanada
- Maharishi Gandharva Veda - Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia - 1am to 4am Raga Shuddha Vasanta
- Contributing artist
Music for Bollywood films
Along with Shivkumar Sharma he composed music for
Music for Telugu films
The music for the film Sirivennela was composed by K. V. Mahadevan which revolves around the role of Hari Prasad, a blind flautist played by Sarvadaman Banerjee and flute renditions by Chaurasia.
Music for English films
Some of his music is used in Mithaq Kazimi's 16 Days in Afghanistan.
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- Kumar, Raj (2003). Essays on Indian Music. Discovery Publishing House. p. 220. ISBN 978-8171417193.
- "Learning from the master: Corporate lessons from flute maestro Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia". Firstpost.com. 9 April 2015. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
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